My sister Karen asked me to make some fire engines to sell at an upcoming charity auction to raise money for a new fire house.
I searched Google's warehouse and found an existing Sketchup plan for a neat looking wood fire engine. It was done by Ron Fritz who has a web site with many plans.
Here is the Google Sketchup of the fire engine:
The plan calls for a double angled engine/hood. I experimented making 2 separate pieces and I could not get them to mate well. I simplified the design and make the hood/engine just one angle. I used this jig to saw them out:
I used this jig to saw the curved top of the cab in the band saw:
The cab has a lot of individual pieces. It takes a couple steps to glue and clamp up all the pieces:
The Sketchup plans called for 1/8" deep by 1/4" wide rabbets on both the cab and bed. I did not see a way to safely make these because there is so little material to hold onto for using a table saw or router. I emailed the designer, he said he used a table saw...but he had built some with no rabbets and they worked fine. I decided to skip the rabbets because of safety. I made the truck bed in 2 pieces versus 1 rabbetted piece:
Making the little ladders was a challenge. I sawed out the 1/4 x 1/4 inch sides from a larger piece on the table saw. I sawed the 1/8" dowel rungs on the scroll saw. I made the rungs too long on purpose, then sanded them flush with the belt sander.
And here is the final assembly stage:
And now for the finished fire engines:
And now the completed fleet of fire engines:
Closing Thoughts on the Fire Engines:
This fire engine design has at least 33 pieces, so it takes a while to cut the pieces and build it. I bought the spoked wheels and the headlights. The spoked wheels were confusing. I wanted 1/4" axles and online description said 1/4".....but when I got them there were 2 different diameters, 1/8 and 1/4....to fit axle pegs with 1/8" diameter and 1/4" head. I just drilled out the axle hole to 1/4" on the drill press.
The finished fire engines are cute and my compliments to the designer.